Are Whiskey & Bourbon Glasses The Same?
All of us have experienced it at one point or another.
A Friday night, you’re walking down the aisle of your favorite liquor store, trying to decide which brown bottle to buy.
The shelf on the right has bourbons, and the shelf on the left contains whiskeys only.
You notice that both whiskey and bourbon appear in the product name as you get closer to the shelf. You’re still confused, aren’t you? It’s not just you.
You might wonder how two brown spirits with such different tastes and appearances can be called two separate drinks.
Although technically correct, they differ significantly in several ways.
How to Choose the Right Glass for Your Whiskey?
Choosing the right glass for your bourbon or whiskey can have a significant impact on how you drink it.
When you are picking the whiskey glass that is right for you, here are the things you should consider.
Evidence proves it
You should remember that not all whiskey is bourbon – this is a fact that every connoisseur should know.
Many of the styles of whiskey produced around the world have become recognized as global standards.
Some of the most popular whiskeys include Scotch, Irish, and American whiskeys.
While bourbon is technically a whiskey, it differs from scotch whiskey in several ways.
Bourbon, historically, was made with corn (51% of it) because Americans from Kentucky turned it into a perfect ingredient for their liquor.
The “bourbon law” requires American distilleries to store bourbon in oak barrels with charred finish and even distill it to a minimum of 160 proof before barreling it. Whiskey, on the other hand, does not need to be aged in new or charred barrels; however, it needs to be aged in oak barrels.
Meanwhile, whisky’s distillation proof should not exceed 190.
Each curve and edge counts for something
It wouldn’t be a good idea to drink whiskey from any glass since whiskey is a highly refined and complex liquor that’s been through several processes.
It makes all the difference to drink whiskey out of the right glass, according to master distillers.
In order to bring out whiskey’s five-star qualities, the rims and structure of the glass are crucial. Having a thick bottom, the glass gives the alcohol some breathing room.
Pouring the whiskey in a glass and swirling it affects its aroma.
Those who are just learning about whiskey will greatly benefit from this step that increases their sensory experience.
Let your senses guide you
Your experience with whiskey can be affected by the way you hold a bourbon glass.
The style and personality of a drinker is more evident when the glass is unique.
It’s no surprise that whiskey is an elegant beverage and can do a lot for the senses of its drinkers.
As a result of its classic design and enhancing interior, the Glencairn glass is considered the gold standard when it comes to bourbon because its shape enhances the flavor while also enhancing the smell.
A shot glass for bourbon may be suitable if you’re the type to determine a liquor’s strength based on how smooth it is.
As bourbon is a very straightforward drink, the aroma would go right to your nose due to the alcohol vapors having no direct path.
The transfer of heat is very important
If you heat your whiskey, it will taste different.
Before storing a bottle of whiskey, take into consideration the body heat that is transferred through the whiskey glasses, such as between a rocks glass and a Glencairn glass.
Rocks glass is held with the corners of your palm, therefore transferring a greater amount of heat, while the former is held with two fingers.
What is Whiskey?
In the late 1400s, both the Scots and the Irish claim that whiskey was invented by them. However, its exact origin and history remains a mystery.
The biggest producers of whiskey are Scotland, Ireland, Canada, Japan and the United States, as well as the fact that it’s made from cereal grains (wheat, barley, corn, rye).
While the category includes some iconic spirits, most notably scotch, rye, and bourbon, it is still highly flexible despite its distinctive specifications (the Americans and Irish call whiskey whiskey, while Scots refer to it as whiskey whisky).
What is Bourbon?
It’s true, bourbon is whiskey.
Almost $4 billion in sales of American whiskey, whose most well-known style is bourbon, were recorded in the United States in 2019; more than Canadian whiskey, Irish whiskey, and rye, combined.
In its most pure form, bourbon is made from mashes that contain at least 51% corn, is aged in charred oak barrels, and contains at least 40% alcohol.
Along with having a high corn content, bourbon is also characterized by notes of sweetness, vanilla, dried fruits, and spices due to the vanillin found in oak during aging.
Despite bourbon being regarded as one of the most popular spirits in the world (95 percent of supply comes from Kentucky), it is legal to manufacture it anywhere in the United States.
Bourbon vs whiskey: Are they the same?
What is the best whiskey sour to make? Or should you go bourbon? Should it be spelled whiskey or whisky? The following is a quick breakdown of important information!
- The whiskey family of distilled liquors is made from fermenting grain mashes including corn, wheat, rye, and barley. A wooden barrel, usually made of oak, is used to age the wine. A whiskey can be classified by its country of origin and its style of production. The following types of whiskey are popular:
- Bourbon (an American whiskey)
- Rye whiskey (U.S. or Canada)
- The whisky (scotch) of Scotland
- The Japanese whiskey
- Whiskey from Ireland (Irish whiskey)
- Unlike many other types of whiskey, bourbon is aged in oak barrels and made from at least 51% corn. As the region of Kentucky that produces most of the bourbon world produces today, this is where it is created. Of the 95% of bourbon produced in the world today, 94% is produced in this region.
Which tastes better, bourbon or whiskey?
The most important question is: what is the taste difference between whiskey and bourbon? Bourbon is, of course, whiskey. When it comes to flavor, what sets bourbon apart from other whiskey types?
- How does bourbon taste? With notes of vanilla, oak, and caramel, bourbon has a sweeter flavor than other whiskey styles. Different brands of bourbon have different flavors, of course. Bourbons can be categorized into four groups based on their flavors: grainy, nutmeg, caramely, and cinnamony.
- What is the taste of rye whiskey? Whiskey made from rye has a distinctively grassy flavor and peppery finish.
- How does Scotch taste? With a smooth flavor that’s malty and buttery, blended Scotch is a great choice for any occasion. Usually, single malt Scotch tastes smoky and peaty, with oak and woody notes. You can read more about Scotch vs Whiskey here. (Pro tip: Whiskey made in Scotland is spelled “whisky.”)
- Is Irish whiskey sweet or sour? This Irish whiskey has hints of florals, nuttiness and vanilla notes, with a light fruity aroma. When compared with bourbon or rye whiskey, it has a smoother finish.
Cocktails made with bourbon and whiskey
Making cocktails with these spirits is now the fun part!
A bourbon cocktail is a whiskey cocktail, as the name implies. All whiskey cocktails cannot be said to be the same.
Bourbon is required for some whisky cocktails. You can create whiskey cocktails using any type of whiskey, including bourbon.
The base liquor for whisky and scotch cocktails should always be whiskey, never bourbon.
Cocktails made with Bourbon
Here are a few popular bourbon cocktails:
- A Bourbon Sour is the best whiskey sour ever – a whiskey cocktail made with bourbon, lemon, and simple syrup.
- A Boulevardier is an alternative to a Negroni made with bourbon instead of gin.
- An alternative to Moscow Mule is the Kentucky Mule, which uses Bourbon instead of vodka.
- As opposed to a cognac-based Sidecar, this one is made with bourbon.
- An alternative to the Manhattan made with rye whiskey is the Bourbon Manhattan.
- Mint juleps are a classic Kentucky cocktail! This cocktail is made with bourbon, ice, and fresh mint.
Cocktails made with whisky
There are several kinds of whiskey that can be used in whiskey cocktails, so here are some popular ones:
- A great Whiskey Sour! Simple syrup, whisky and lemon.
- A tie for the most famous whiskey cocktail goes to the classic Old Fashioned! It uses bourbon or rye to make the cocktail.
- Whiskey Smash – Any type of whiskey, lemon, mint, crushed ice.
- The whiskey highball can be made with any type of whiskey and soda water or ginger ale.
- Another classic from Manhattan! Sweet vermouth, whiskey (rye or bourbon), and bitters.
- Do you want to know more? You can use all types in Whiskey Cocktails or see Scotch Cocktails and Irish Whiskey Cocktails.
What makes Whiskey and Bourbon different?
To begin with, you must understand what whiskey actually is. MasterClass describes whiskey as a distilled beverage made from fermented grains.
According to where the whiskey is produced, it might contain rye, wheat, barley, corn, and even corn.
A minimum 40% alcohol content (ABV) is typical for whiskey (which is typically aged in wooden casks prior to being bottled) and the flavor may be warm, sweet, spicy, toasty, or even caramelized. Doesn’t that sound simple? There’s more to it than that.
With your new knowledge of whiskey, you now know there are several varieties of whiskey to choose from.
One of those is, unsurprisingly, Bourbon, which is known for its taste and name.
Are there any whiskeys that qualify as both whiskeys and bourbons?
This may be affected by our discussion of fermented grains above.
It must have at least 51 percent corn in the mash bill (the mixture of fermented grains used to make whiskey) in order to be referred to as bourbon.
However, corn content alone is not enough to determine whether whiskey is classified as bourbon.
Bourbon must be aged in newly charred white oak barrels if you want it to have the distinctive sweet and nutty flavor profile you love.
In addition to being made in the USA, it must also be affordable.
Bourbon whiskey must also be distilled at no more than 160 proof, and aged in new oak barrels that are no more than 125 proof. What a wonderful experience!
Bourbon also does not specify its aging period, which may interest you.
Thus, bourbon with an age of just three months can be bottled, sold, and consumed in no time at all.
By contrast, straight Bourbon whiskey must be aged for a minimum of two years before being bottled.
The ABV of any bourbon bottled these days must also be 40 percent, for similar reasons to whiskey.
While all whiskey falls into the category of bourbon, not all bourbon is a whiskey. Whatever you choose to drink, make sure to drink responsibly.
An excellent spirit is about the minute details.
It is necessary for each whiskey variety to be blended at a certain level of complexity. Glassware holding pristine spirits is also held to the same standard. A whiskey glass that’s the right type for you will enrich your sensory experience.
Frequently Asked Questions
Is every bourbon whiskey?
It is true. While all bourbon is whiskey, not all whiskey is bourbon. The label “straight American whiskey” must state that it has been aged in new, charred-oak cans and barrels, and that there is a certain amount of grains in it. There must be at least 51 percent corn in the mash of bourbon, and it must be aged in charred oak barrels.
What does bourbon have in common with whiskey?
Bourbon is a kind of whiskey. Therefore, calling bourbon a whiskey would be correct. However, not all whiskies can be called “bourbon.”.
Does Jack Daniel’s have a whiskey or bourbon taste?
Tennessee produces whiskey made by Jack Daniel’s. It is different from most other bourbons from Tennessee because Jack Daniel’s is filtered by charcoal before it is aged.
Does whiskey taste better than bourbon?
There’s no right or wrong way to describe flavor. These notes are usually found in strong bourbons. As a result, whiskey has a broader taste and is more versatile.